Conservancies get boost from Mine
The Swakop Uranium Foundation donated equipment to the value of N$62,464 to the Otjimboyo and Ohungu Conservancies, based near the Ugab River in the northern part of the Erongo region.
Swakop Uranium Vice President: Human Resources, Business Support, Percy McCallum said: “The equipment will assist the members of the conservancies to monitor their respective areas and to minimise incidences of poaching in their areas.”
The equipment consists of bicycles, binoculars, camping tents, sleeping bags, backpacks, water bottles, and 2-way radios, amongst other items. “I am sure that this will greatly assist in making their jobs more effective,” McCallum added.
“Swakop Uranium is committed to improving the lives of the people of the Erongo Region so that they can become productive citizens which in turn will ensure the prosperity of the region and the country as a whole. The two conservancies are home to approximately 1,500 people, and I believe that this contribution will assist these communities to generate more income,” he said.
The donation was done in partnership with the Namibia Nature Foundation which provided technical skills training workshops to the Conservancy members. They also provided training on institutional capacity building, governance, staff and financial management, and natural resource management.
At the event, Special Advisor to the Erongo Regional Governor, Adelheid Kandjala said “the well-being of the people of the Erongo Region is a priority for the Office of the Governor, and we continuously pursue opportunities for public-private partnerships that would uplift the standard of living of our communities.”
She said initiatives such as the management of community-based conservancies rely on corporate funding to start-up and sustain their activities. “I would like to thank Swakop Uranium for reaching out to the communities in the region and beyond, through the Swakop Uranium Foundation, thus enabling the development of our people and communities,” she said.
Receiving the donation on behalf of the two Conservancies, Benedictus April said “poaching is one of the main challenges in the conservancies.” To better counter this and other challenges, the conservancies approached the Namibia Nature Foundation to assist with training, while they approached the Swakop Uranium Foundation to donate the equipment they needed. “This donation is a step forward in the realisation of zero poaching in our area.” He said that the bicycles provide a silent mode of transport, allowing them to monitor the area without being heard by potential poachers.